It has been a productive week for developers working on Depths of Erendorn. The 3D modelling team have returned to working on the newest armour for the Human Knight. During this time, the Set Piece Design team has been working on assets for the Graveyard event. The wizards of coding have been updating how collisions interact with the procedural foliage and also adding a couple of new features. Meanwhile, the sound team worked on a quick solution for some technical issues whilst the environment gets some new roads and atmospheric fog. Finally, the animations team finishes updating the cycles for the Twilight Elf Assassin and started on some dialogue emotes. As always, join us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Reddit for daily updates on Depths of Erendorn. Alternatively, join our Discord for all the latest! - now let’s get into it!
The 3D modelling team has spent the week working on the armour for the Human Knight. The main aim throughout the week was to continue to add detail to the protective gear. The most noticeable differences to the armour are the new ornate design that has been put on the shoulder pads. Although they will serve no purpose other than looks, with the armour being as bold as it is, they fit in well. The team will continue to work on the protective gear throughout the coming week, adding extra details and smoothing out the model. An example of the progress on the armour can be seen below.
Set Piece Design
While still tackling some texture issues that have plagued the team for a few weeks, some assets for an event have been created. As with other events, this graveyard will randomly spawn for players as they adventure around the open world and dungeons. The team has created a range of assets that can be used in a variety of orientations as the event spawns into the world. The team would go on to implement these new assets into the world, ready for gameplay. Examples of the new assets for the Graveyard event can be seen below.
This week has been spent updating how the newly added collision presets and trace channels interact in Depths of Erendorn to ensure gameplay can continue to function while facilitating procedural foliage and Navigation Data generation. UI hiding and Entity Stat bars have also seen updates as well as the shared functionality between Interactable Objects. Additional work from the client-side team can be seen below.
- Updated the Toggle UI function to be limited to Session gameplay.
- Added a message for exiting UI Hidden mode that shows and fades when UI is toggled off.
- Fixed automatic application of hidden UI for all relevant widgets to keep the visibility setting uniform.
- Refactored the setting up and updating of stat bars to narrow down the causes of stat bars disappearing and showing as static.
- Updated the Preset_Landscape_Basic collision preset to be applied to all-terrain pieces and work with player interaction, foliage generation and nav data generation.
- Updated Preset_Interactable_Active to function as intended when the player is clicking on interactables and added Preset_Interactable_Inactive for disabling interaction.
- Updated the Interactable_Base class to have unified properties and functions for dealing with collision changes from interactable state changes and combat focus changes.
- Refactored the movement mapping tool to utilise UE5's Data layers.
- Implemented Movement blocking volumes to reduce the need for manual touch-ups.
- Re-mapped the new zone 1 terrain.
- Updated missing class renders in the inspect window.
- Updated the layout of the character select screen to use class renders, and altered the character list to use new UI elements and better scrolling.
- Started fixing updates to the character select/creation transitions to updated character lists and adding a refresh timer to vendors.
The server team's been busy this week on a few new features, as well as fixing some systemic bugs that'd been kicking around for some time. The first thing to be completed was a restock timer for Vendors. Rather than just having one inventory that lasts as long as the server does, Vendors will now get new randomly generated stock every fixed period (currently an hour).
The second was creating conditional dialogue responses. These are responses given to something an NPC says to you, but only if you meet the condition. For example, you won't have the option to ask a herbalist to heal you if you're in full health, or won't be able to see the option to sell anything to a trader if you have nothing to sell.
Finally, Generated Event Locations were created. Previously, events in the open world were manually placed on the map. However, this led to a lack of interaction between the hand-made open world being made and required constant updates as the map changed. Another downside of this was that all event locations could be 'learned'. Now the server will generate locations each time the zone is loaded as long as they meet a few parameters (Enough room to fit them, not too many of one type of event, etc). To maintain flexibility we can still manually define locations should we want specific locations on certain zones. The server will now mix both sources of event spawn locations, and choose locations for events from both lists. Fixes and additional work from the server-side team can be seen below.
- Extinguishing a cursed brazier now correctly updates the client about its new state.
- Rock Barrage now correctly applies its area of effect.
- Some broken dialogue trees now correctly branch into the rest of the conversation.
- Fixed a server crash when failing to spawn enemies.
- Fixed a bug which caused your old character data to be sent on adventures after you change character instead of the new character.
- Refactored Removing Members from parties.
- Implemented a party update on character change to update party member's UI.
- Refactored zone loading to implement dynamic event location generation.
- Implemented the new distance information from the zone data into the server code.
The sound department would start the week by updating audio that is used to indicate to the player when turns have finished and when they begin. These pieces of audio will be useful if a player isn't paying attention to the screen for any reason. The sound of a blade scraping and a drum impact have been utilised to give impact to the audio making it identifiable as a notification to the player. Some change may come to these pieces as the team experiments with which is more important for player interaction. To end the week, due to some technical issues, the team would create some soundscapes for the stone caves. The solution to these issues is far less dynamic and requires more space than the system the team hoped to put in place, but they will be very useful for the upcoming build the team are working towards. Examples of the new notification audio and cave soundscapes can be found below.
Lots of exciting updates coming to the environment of the initial area throughout the week. Starting with a new road network that has been implemented, connecting multiple points of interest throughout Erendorn's grasslands. The trails have been implemented using the same technique that has been utilised to set dress the grasslands with rocks. Additionally, the procedural foliage system, which places such assets as twigs, flowers and rocks, has seen some updates as well. The main update to this system comes in the form of adjustments to the amount of these assets that are placed within the world. This in turn will bring more varied foliage across the initial area of Erendorn and beyond. Finally, the team implemented a layer of fog around the base of the mountain range. These effects bring more realism to the world along with a moody and mysterious atmosphere that will pique players' interest as they explore the initial area. Examples of all the changes made throughout the week can be seen below.
The animation team has been hard at work over the past week, focusing on finalizing the combat animations for the Twilight Elf Assassin. They have completed the updated combat walk, which completes the animations for this character. These animations can now be seen in the game engine, ready for gameplay. The team has now moved on to creating generic emotes for vendors to use when interacting with players. Adding these types of movement cycles will bring a lot of life to the non-playable characters that inhabit the settlements and surrounding areas. The team has created these movement cycles specifically for the vendors in these areas, but they can be used in many different ways throughout the world of Erendorn as players interact with various NPCs during their travels. Examples of the updated movement cycle for the Elf Assassin and the vendor emotes can be seen below.
That’s it for this week’s devlog, but have you seen our monthly roundup of December yet?!